Then & Now: Thomas Hardware Store, Gaithersburg
Looking at old photographs is like peering through an open window back into history. Not only do they give you a sense of wonder from traveling back in time, but also a staggering feeling of awe from seeing just how much things have changed. For this post, I have used one of Lewis Reed’s original photographs for “then” and a Google Maps street view image from today for “now”.
Thomas Hardware Store (THEN): This photo was taken by Lewis Reed when the first system of water mains and sewers were installed by the WSSC in Gaithersburg, circa 1926-1928. The store in the background is the Thomas Hardware Store, originally built and operated by Thomas Iraneous Fulks. The water pipes to be laid are resting by the side of the road. The child on the right in the photograph is Lewis Reed’s daughter, Mary Jane (Reed) Gartner.
T. I. Fulks was a businessman and farmer. He worked as a bookkeeper for the Gaithersburg Milling and Manufacturing Company and then opened a hardware store at 219 East Diamond Avenue.
Thomas Hardware Store Location (NOW): The same view 90 years later. The old hardware store is enclosed in the present brick building (Gaithersburg Rental Center) at 219 East Diamond Avenue.
Source: Gaithersburg: History of a City